By Hasanki Kasthuriarachchi
On October 8th 2023
Sri Lanka has been experiencing heavy rain for the past few days. In terms of extreme weather conditions, the Matara district has come into the spotlight, particularly in areas near the Nilwala River. The Disaster Management Department warns of a major risk of flooding near the Dilwale River in the next 12 hours. Many low-lying areas near the Nilwala River are still inundated, and disaster management officials report that many roads in that area are also underwater.
The Director of the Hydrology and Disaster Management Delegation, S. P. C. Sugeeshwara, stated that on October 6th at 4:30 p.m., the Irrigation Department issued a statement warning the areas around the Nilwala River Valley of a major flood situation. These warnings remain in effect for the specified areas. If the rain continues, the flood situation may worsen. However, so far, no significant floods have been reported. Due to this concern, people in Malimboda, Athuraliya, Kaburupitiya, and Akuressa divisional secretariats must remain vigilant. Furthermore, the flood situation around the Gin River is expected to persist.
Yesterday, on October 7th, a meeting was held at the Matara Divisional Secretariat office to discuss additional steps that should be taken regarding the situation. Minister Kanchana Wijesekara and relevant officials from the Army, Navy, Police, and other agencies participated in this meeting.
According to the information available, around 30.000 people in Matara have been affected by this flood situation.
In the Galle district, many areas and roads around the Gin River are also flooded, as reported by the Galle Divisional Secretariat. The ongoing increase in rainwater levels in the Maguru River and Kuda River, tributaries of the Kalu River in the Kalutara district, has caused a minor flooding situation in the area.
The Ministry of Education for the Southern Province has announced the closure of all schools in Matara and Galle districts on Monday (October 09) and Tuesday (October 10) due to the prevailing situation. This decision was made after discussions with the Southern Province Governor, Willy Gamage.
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